Thursday, March 29, 2012

Yeah! Booz it up at Starbucks!

Starbucks billionaire Howard Schultz, always the innovator, always test marketing new ideas has a new one for 2012: beer and wine!

After (supposedly) a very successful recent test market campaign in the Pacific Northwest, Starbucks has decided to roll out the very liquid beverages elsewhere in the United States this year. Southern California, always up for a good time, is next on the list for a beer and wine phase-in at selected stores in the Southland.

Not everyone is enthusiastic about the upcoming booz-for-bucks Starbucks campaign:
 “This is just a way for Starbucks to turn into bar bucks,” --- Michael Scippa, public affairs director for Alcohol Justice, a northern California non-profit based in San Rafael, California.
Yeah! Enjoy a cold one, Howard!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Magic Johnson Overpays for the Dodgers by $1 billion

Magic Johnson, NBA MVP, NBA Champion, businessman, entrepreneur, venture capitalist, philanthropist and all-around great guy.

Now, part-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers MLB baseball team.

Magic Johnson as NBA MVP, NBA Champion, etc., is a very successful individual. He will be far less successful as baseball tycoon. (But, ESPN won't tell you that part).

Let us count the ways.

There is a big difference between venture capital deal-making and owning and operating a business. Especially a money-pit of a baseball team that requires a continuous financing model.
  • First, this is a highly leveraged business deal. Razor thin margins force you into making decisions you don't want to make and decisions you can't make. This happens to be just the kind of deal that Bud Selig doesn't want MLB to make, but was forced to anyway. (An e-Bay like auction of a baseball team no-less) This is exactly the kind of deal that knocked Jeff Moorad out of contention with the San Diego Padres and his ownership attempt there.
  • Second, little or no available operating capital will be available for product development - namely baseball players. Albert Pujols is already taken and plays and lives nearby Disneyland. Other superstars will not be coming soon. There will be no budget for them.
  • Lastly, the TV deal. Read up on this one. This deal will have to go exactly right or else the financial and baseball future at Chavez Ravine looks more like another smog-filled day in the Southland.
So, who are the winners and the losers in this Dodgers Deal?
Losers: Magic Johnson, Dodger fans, MLB, Bud Selig

Winners: Frank McCourt, other teams in the National League West
Showtime comes to the Los Angeles Dodgers and Chavez Ravine.

Instead Showtime, with this Dodgers Deal, is like buying Los Angeles Real Estate at the top of the property bubble.

Have a couple of Dodger Dogs on us, Magic.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Pat Bowlen wins the Peyton Manning Quarterback Auction

It was billionaire vs. billionaire.

Oil man vs. oil man.

Denver vs. Tennessee in the 2012 Peyton Manning National Quarterback auction and derby.

Patrick Dennis "Pat" Bowlen is our winner.

Bud Adams, who thought he had the Tennessee advantage, thought he could bring the ol' Tennessee Volunteer home, thought Peyton's wife would talk him into joining the Titans, thought wrong.

There is a reason why Denver has two Super Bowl championships and Tennessee has none.

That reason is John Elway.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Warren Buffett: NOT great with personal philanthropy

" turns out that Gates and Buffett have pledged to give most of their money to the Gates Foundation. But they haven’t actually done so, yet."

 article: Haven’t Gates and Buffett given away their billions?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Suffer, the little billionaires

Read the heart pounding story about Gina Rinehart and other billionaires in how "Even billionaires get the blues."

article: Syndey Morning Herald

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Carlos Slim remains number one on Forbes billionaires list

Mexico's Carlos Slim remained the world's richest man for the third year in a row with a $69 billion fortune on the Forbes billionaire list. Slim was down $5 billion compared to last year.

Bill Gates of Microsoft came in second at $61 billion, up $5 billion for the year.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

R. Allen Stanford guilty on 13 of 14 charges of money laundering and fraud

In Houston, a jury has found R. Allen Stanford, 61, guilty on 13 of 14 charges of money laundering and fraud. This was a Ponzi scheme that lost billions of dollars for investors worldwide.

The jury verdict came during the fourth full day of deliberations and after a month long trial.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Michael Dell says don't call Dell Inc. a PC company

Michael Dell (NSDQ:Dell), chairman and CEO of Dell Inc., in a major press conference this week introducing new servers, networking services, storage products and other services said the company has changed significantly over the past five years.

 "Dell is not a PC company. It's an end-to-end solutions company," Michael Dell said.

So prove Michael Dell correct. Buy a tablet or some other product from Dell today to help him realize his non-PC global corporate strategy.

Dell Streak 7 Wi-Fi Tablet